College Rodeo – Salina UT

I missed the Twin Falls ID Rodeo because I was just too sick. It was disappointing to miss since I had laid out big birding plans. Ah well, maybe the Bear River Refuge would be open this weekend. Once again I left early on Friday and HOORAY the refuge was open. I drove the soggy loop and spotted:

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Pied billed grebe

Black billed magpies, California gulls, American robins, Rock doves, Rough legged hawks, House sparrows, Pied billed grebes, Cinnamon teals

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Cinnamon teals

Red winged blackbirds, Starlings, Killdeer, Tree swallows, House sparrows, Canda geese, Great horned owl, Ring necked pheasants, Coots, Mallards, Northern pintails

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Northern pintails

American avocets, Northern shovelers, Double crested cormorant, Great blue herons, Western grebes, Trumpeter swans

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Trumpeter swans

Northern harriers, Ruddy ducks, Clarks grebes, Horned larks, Ring necked duck, Sandhill crane, Western meadowlarks, Common ravens
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It really is a long drive to the middle of nowhere. Next up rodeo, and more rodeo, and more frustration with my camera. In January I took an online course on photography. I’ve been really frustrated with my inability to take better pictures at the rodeo. I thought the course would help me use my Nikon P610 (superzoom) better. But what I realized is that while the zoom part of this camera was awesome for still subjects, it just didn’t have the ability to take the fast moving action of a rodeo. I used the paying off of my student loans as an excuse and started shopping for a new camera. After some initial research I turned to my friends on Facebook. There was much discussion and suggestions all of which were useful. And in the end I ordered a Sony Alpha A6500. I had hoped to get the camera before heading for this rodeo. No such luck. They tried to deliver it just a few hours after I left. DSCN7377
On Saturday between Slack and the performance I stopped for lunch at this awesome cafe. Mom’s Cafe on the corner of State and Main in Salina UT. It was amazing. If you ever get to Salina UT… I then tried to bird, but was thwarted by cold weather and tiredness from the illness that was still hanging on. I still managed to spot a few birds including a Brewer’s blackbird which is my first spotting of it this year. Napping and a final rodeo.

The ISU Women’s team is doing very well. I did manage to get a few good closeups of a few of them just before their breakaway roping runs.

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The pick up guys were companioned by this amazing border collie. It was the most effective chaser of loose steer, bulls, and horses ever.

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It was a great weekend.

— Jenny


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